Some kids would give their kingdom for a castle bed, but prefabricated and custom-made bed frames can get expensive. With wood prices on the rise, purchasing plywood to build a castle bed from scratch can also get expensive. Cut costs with careful planning and a little ingenuity, by designing a castle bed that can be constructed with mainly salvaged supplies.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Drawing paper
- Coloured pencils
- Graph paper (scale: four squares per inch)
- Tape measure
- Children's catalogues and toy magazines
Research castle architecture and design styles at the local library. Page through children's catalogues and toy magazines for inspiration on how other designers have redesigned castle architectural features for children.
Scour local flea markets and thrift stores for arched window frames, carved wood medallions and inexpensive, carved wood furniture that can be stripped and cut down to be used as decorative embellishments on the castle bed.
Sketch five to seven possible bed designs with the pencil and drawing paper, incorporating the salvaged, carved wood from the flea markets as decorative elements on the designs.
Photocopy two or three favourite bed designs, making several copies of each design. Enhance the photocopies with the coloured pencils, experimenting with various colour palettes.
Choose the final design and colour in the original drawing with the selected colour palette.
Mark elements on the final design, such as castle turrets, balconies and draw bridge that can be featured as 3-D accents. For example, an arched window frame can be attached to the base plywood castle silhouette as the castle entrance.
Measure the mattress, box spring and metal bed frame to which the castle headboard and footboard will be attached.
Draw the measurements onto the graph paper with the pencil, using a scale of 1 inch per foot; this works out to be four squares per foot on the graph paper.
Draw the outline of the final castle design onto the graph paper using the same 1 inch per foot scale. Add supports to the castle design as necessary.
Tips and warnings
- Simple, castle-shaped headboards can be mounted to the bed frame with carriage bolts and to the wall studs with wood screws.
- Eliminate the metal bed frame and box spring by building a 3-D plywood loft bed to support the mattress alone.
- 3-D loft bed frames that support the mattress are complex furniture-building projects that could collapse and cause injury without the proper support infrastructure. Be sure to consult a professional on the structural soundness of the design before building.
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